Marina Alonzo/Staff Writer
This week, the annual “Relay for Life” event is back, uniting the FIU community to support the American Cancer Society for its 17th year.
This year’s theme, “Kick Cancer to Infinity and Beyond,” seeks to raise awareness about cancer research.
“Relay for Life,” to be held Friday, March 5 in Parking Lot 9 from 6 to 8 p.m., will take place as an in-car meetup at Modesto A. Maidique campus. In addition, as an even safer alternative, the event will also be available via Instagram Live from FIU Relay’s Instagram.
Cars will be staggered, with two parking spaces in between each vehicle, in order to provide sufficient distance to make everyone feel safe while still turning out to show support.
“The event’s going to look really different, in the sense that it’s not a six-hour event how it normally is, it’s going to be a two-hour event., ” said Patricia Lopez-Guerrero, faculty advisor for “Relay for Life”.
Cars must be pre registered on Panther Connect, and every participant must be cleared on the P3 app, and although it is an outdoor event, masks are required.
There will be a concession area which is called the Marketplace which has individually wrapped items as well as bottled drinks.
“It’s just a great cause to support. I think cancer is an issue that touches every single person,” Guerrero said.
Due to the pandemic, the Relay for Life team has decided to broadcast pre recorded entertainment on a screen at the event so that there is not a crowded stage.
The Relay for Life tradition of Beautiful Lengths, where participants can donate eight inches of hair will be done via Zoom on March 4, and a video will be aired on the day of the event.
On Monday, March 1 there will be a drive-through event for survivors where they will be able to pick up a Relay for Life bag, which includes a T-Shirt and a medal along with other items.
“I want to say that our drive-through caravan is the highlight of the evening,” Guerrero added when discussing the Luminaria ceremony happening on March 5, “you don’t have to be registered to participate in the event because you’re not getting out of your car.”
The Luminaria Ceremony is held every year at Relay for Life, where participants donate a Luminaria and write a personal message or dedicate it to a loved one.
Since this is an outdoor event, the team has prepared socially distanced “pods” for the team captains to sit during the event
The “Relay for Life” team will go Live on Instagram to stream key moments during the event for those that are high risk or uncomfortable with in-person events.
“They have a plan to go live on Instagram at certain key moments of the event so that they can broadcast and share them with everyone that follows Relay,” said Lopez-Guerrero.
The event will be held at Parking Lot 9, in front of the Ziff building and up to 60 cars are allowed.
For more information follow PantherNow and Relay for Life FIU on Instagram.